The impact of Saudi systemic factors on investigative journalism

Almania, AM 2019, The impact of Saudi systemic factors on investigative journalism , PhD thesis, Salford University.

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Abstract

Investigative journalism is considered one of the most important types of news reporting although importantly it differs according to the media environment in which it is practised. This study addresses gaps in the literature by exploring the practice and status of investigative journalism in Saudi Arabia. This research examines the factors that influence investigative journalism, focusing on the relationship between systemic elements and the practice of investigative journalism from the perspectives of journalists and editors-in-chief. The study attempts to elucidate the ways that political, cultural and religious considerations influence investigative journalism. The mixed method approach adopted in this study combines interviews with editors-in-chief and questionnaires with journalists from all Saudi newspapers. Gatekeeping as a theoretical framework is employed to examine the extent to which the systemic factors, particularly the political and religious, impact on the practice of investigative journalism. Based on current literature and the findings of this study, the practice of investigative journalism is not common in Saudi Arabia, and there is a lack of professional recognition of investigative journalism influenced by inadequate training, financing and consideration of its importance. This study has established that the obstacles and restrictions imposed upon journalists by the systemic environment are unique to the socio-political climate in Saudi Arabia. Hence, this study has contributed to the existing body of research, finding that the government has the most influence over the practice of investigative journalism, while other factors such as culture and religion are influenced by the government. Moreover, this study has identified gatekeeping as a multi-stage process that is initiated prior to launching journalistic investigations and continues throughout the news cycle up to and through post-production.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Contributors: O'Reilly, CA (Supervisor)
Schools: Schools > School of Arts & Media
Depositing User: Ali Mohammed Almania
Date Deposited: 07 May 2019 10:56
Last Modified: 07 May 2019 10:56
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/51110

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